Humane Society Silicon Valley
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Pet Surrender Services

Santa Clara County shelters are experiencing a dangerously high volume of cats right now. In order to help cats at risk of euthanasia in our county, HSSV is unable to accept owner surrendered cats at this time. If you need rehoming advice or support, please call us (408)262-2133 x110 or e-mail Thank you for your understanding.

Giving up an animal is a difficult decision and HSSV has many programs to help keep your pet in your home.  If you are considering surrender, we ask that you exhaust all options before starting the surrender process. Not sure what your options are? We can help! Call us at (408)262-2133 x110 for free support.

If you are still in need of surrendering your pet after reviewing all of your options, we may be able to help. Please be aware that shelter space at Humane Society Silicon Valley is extremely limited due to a high volume of requests to help animals in our neighboring shelters, and a large number of pet owners needing to surrender their animals. Please anticipate that it may take several days up to several weeks for your pet to come into our adoption program.

In order to have the greatest impact on our local community, HSSV does not accept surrendered animals from outside Santa Clara County.  Please check our listings of other local organizations.

Step 1- Forms and Proof of Current Vaccinations

In order to start the surrender process, please fill out a Pet Surrender Questionnaire form and send it back to us along with proof of your pet’s current vaccinations. Cats, kittens, dogs and puppies are required to be current on vaccines prior to being approved to come into our program. Vaccines are available at our Medical Center on a walk-in basis and no appointment is necessary for vaccinating your pet. Dogs should be current on their DA2PP "combo," Bordatella, and Rabies vaccinations.  Cats should be current on their FVRCP "combo" and their Rabies vaccinations.  There are no vaccine requirements for rabbits or pocket pets.

To begin the surrender process, download your Pet Owner Questionnaire here:

Dog Owner Questionnaire
Cat Owner Questionnaire
Rabbit Owner Questionnaire
Pocket Pet Questionnaire
For puppy or kitten litters using our Preventing Unwanted Pregnancies (P.U.P.) program, click here

Please return your completed pet owner questionnaire and proof of vaccines via e.mail to, via fax to 408-262-2131, or you may drop it off in person at our Animal Community Center Pet Surrender Lobby located at 901 Ames Avenue in Milpitas.


Step 2- Information Gathering

Once we’ve received your Pet Owner Questionnaire and proof of vaccines we will contact you to discuss your pet’s behavior and health history in detail and ask any questions we may have about your pet. For animals with a history of illness, injury or special medical needs, we will want to know who your pet’s veterinarian is so we can call to request any pertinent records.

Dog Evaluations

HSSV requires in-person evaluations of all dogs prior to approving them for our surrender program and wait list. If you have submitted your Dog Owner Questionnaire and vaccination records, when we call to review the information with you we will schedule a time for an in-person dog evaluation.

When you bring your dog to the pre-surrender evaluation appointment, you will be asked to bring a fecal sample for routine testing if your dog has not had a fecal test done within the last 12 months. If your dog has had a fecal test done within the last 12 months at your own veterinarian, please bring proof of the test results for our records.

Our goal at Humane Society Silicon Valley is to make the transition from home to shelter as stress-free as possible. Depending on your animals’ particular needs, we may request that you return for additional sessions before surrendering your pet so that they are as comfortable as possible with their new surroundings.

Step 3- Reservation Wait List and Fee Deposit

After we have reviewed all of the information from your Pet Owner Questionnaire, medical and vaccination records and in-person dog evaluation (if applicable) we will be able to let you know whether or not your pet has been approved to enter our adoption program and be added to our Reservation Waiting List. If approved for our program a $60 deposit is required at the time your animal is added to our Waiting List. The $60 deposit will be applied to your pet surrender fee* which is due at time of intake.

*Surrender Fees

Your surrender fees provide your pet with:

Please note, additional surrender fees may be assessed depending on your individual animal's circumstances.  For an estimate of surrender fees, please contact our Customer Care Team at 408-262-2133 ext. 110 or e.mail

Step 4- Intake Appointment

When space is available we will contact you to make an appointment to bring your pet in for intake into the shelter. When you bring your pet for their intake appointment, cats, rabbits and pocket pets must be in carriers and dogs must be on-leash.

"Moving day" can be stressful for both humans and animals.  To help comfort your pet while s/he is adjusting to our shelter environment, you are highly encouraged to bring your pet’s unwashed favorite bed, blanket and/or toy. Donations of kennels, carriers, and other pet supplies are also greatly appreciated and are tax deductible.

To help your pet make a good first impression and attract the attention of a potential adopter, we recommend you have your animal bathed and/or groomed before your appointment.  A shiny coat, trimmed nails and a new haircut can not only help pets feel better, it can help them get adopted faster!

Step 5- In the Shelter

Once in the shelter, all animals receive both a health and temperament assessment to determine their needs both in the shelter and in a new home. Admission into HSSV is not a guarantee that your animal will go up for adoption, however, if they do not meet our health or safety requirements then every attempt is made to find the animal a home either through one of HSSV's rescue group or shelter partners.
If your animal is not a candidate for our adoption programs and cannot be placed with another organization due to either medical or behavioral issues, you may chose to be notified. To find out more about your post-surrender options, please talk with our Customer Care team.

HSSV does not place any time limits on an animal's stay with our organization once it is made available for adoption!  Provided the animal stays mentally and physically sound and safe, animals will be available for adoption until a new home is found, even if that takes days, weeks, or months.

Step 6- Adoption!

HSSV has a tremendous amount of knowledge and experience matching people with pets. When a potential adopter is interested in one of our animals, we take our time getting to know them and letting them get to know the animals before deciding to take home a new companion. Once a match is made, HSSV is here for life to support both the new pet and his/her adopter. We offer post-adoption support, dog training courses, veterinary referrals, adjustment tips and lots more.